Details of power station planning could be handled by one council

Telford and Wrekin Council is to hand over responsibility for the Ironbridge Power Station development plans to Shropshire Council – if it decides to support them.

The power station tower were demolished in 2019
The power station tower were demolished in 2019

Identical outline applications have been submitted to both authorities by Harworth Group, which wants to build 1,000 homes, a school, a medical centre, and community, business and leisure facilities on the 350-acre site at Buildwas.

While the majority of the land lies within Shropshire Council’s boundary, a small part crosses over into Telford and Wrekin.

Telford and Wrekin is now asking to delegate any further negotiations with the developer to Shropshire Council, in the event that both councils approve the outline plans.

A report by Shropshire Council’s director of place, Mark Barrow, to members says: “In order to develop the site effectively the applicant will require planning permission for both applications.

“Each planning application will be submitted for consideration by planning committee at each council in due course.

“If planning permission is granted a single comprehensive decision with a single list of planning conditions and section 106 legal agreement is preferred so as to coordinate the delivery of the development.

“Telford and Wrekin Council has confirmed that in the event that its planning committee recommends approval for the part of the site that falls within the Telford and Wrekin boundary approval will be sought for onward delegation of the final decision for the whole site to Shropshire Council as the ‘lead planning authority’.

“This would allow Shropshire Council to issue a single decision that includes that part of the site within Telford and Wrekin.”

The application will be decided at a special meeting of Shropshire Council’s southern planning committee on March 23, and the parallel application will go before Telford and Wrekin Council’s planning committee in May.

Shropshire councillors will be asked to approve the authority’s acceptance of delegated planning control at a meeting next Thursday.

Mr Barrow’s report adds: “Without prejudice, a significant number of subsequent applications for reserved matters approval and discharge of conditions are likely to be submitted following any approval of the current outline application.

“This is having regard to the major and multi-phase nature of the proposals.

“Each application will be subject to its own planning consultation process. If all subsequent applications were determined by both Shropshire Council and Telford and Wrekin Council then this would lead to unnecessary duplication and potential confusion amongst consultees and other planning stakeholders.

“In view of this it is considered expedient to accept the expected offer of onward delegation of planning control from Telford and Wrekin Council when Telford and Wrekin determines its equivalent outline planning application in May 2021.”

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